It's informal but also kid-friendly and definitely not as edgy as using the word 'chulo'. You can use it in the following ways:
- ¡Qué chachi la foto
What a great photo!
- ¡Vaya bolso más chachi llevas!
That's a great bag you're wearing.
- Ayer me lo pasé chachi contigo en el cine.
I had a great time with you at the movies yesterday.
The etymology of the word is something of a mystery. One theory is that it derives from the 'gitano' – (Gypsy) word caló (meaning truth/real) and si.
But another, and our favourite explanation, is that it's use dates back to the Second World War period in Andalusia when Spain, in the aftermath of the Spanish Civil War was in the grip of famine.
The blackmarket thrived and especially prized for their superior quality were goods smuggled in over the border from Gibraltar. Those foreign imports were dubbed “Churchills” after the British Prime Minister at the time, which in the local Andalusian accent became 'charchil' and that over time derived to 'chachi'
This word of the day has been contributed by LAE Madrid, the leading Spanish academy in Madrid. Accredited by the Insitituto Cervantes, it offers Spanish courses for all levels and also has Spanish classes for kids and families. Read their blog for more Spanish!